It’s an age old question – what is the best way to be able to access the trunk of your car with a bike rack installed. For most racks, that means tilting. Through a various combination of pulling pins, pushing buttons, and straining to make sure the weight of the bikes doesn’t bring them crashing to a halt once the rack reaches the end of its travel. The new Saris Glide aims to simplify all of that. With a single button and a gentle push or pull, the Glide moves out of the way and back in place in one smooth motion.
The secret to the rack’s ease of use is the ‘four bar’ linkage which came from Saris’ chief mechanical Engineer, BJ Bass. Stemming from his own design sketches of a full suspension mountain bike, BJ realized that the linkage would allow the center of mass for the bikes on the rack to remain mostly in the same plane. That means much easier movement of the rack while fully loaded, and a motion that can be done with one hand.
And yet, the Glide is still impressively light. At 35lbs, the rack makes use of aluminum for the frame and structure and engineered plastic for the latch to keep things light. Available in four or five bike versions, the Glide will support individual bikes up to 35lbs. Bikes are held in place with low profile cradles and ratchet straps, and the EX version includes integrated locks for the rack and the bikes.
To make installation as easy as possible, the rack will fit both 1 1/4″ or 2″ receivers, and installs without tools with a unique adjustable wedge system that eliminates slop at the receiver.
There are colors as well – standard black, or copper and saphire blue.
Now for another interesting bit – the Glide is being launched on Kickstarter. Yes, Saris is launching a new rack on the crowdfunding site (and at ridiculously low prices). Why? Saris says that the campaign will allow early supporters to have input into the rack’s final design, while also allowing Saris to keep manufacturing products in the U.S. With production scheduled for for early Spring 2018, and racks priced as low as $100 through Kickstarter (sorry, already gone) it seems like a pretty good deal for consumers – even if you get in at the current price of $250 for the four bike EX version or $275 for the 5 bike EX version. Retail price is set at $499 and $549, so if you like the design of the Glide (as we did when we saw a prototype), you’d better hurry – there are only around 100 racks left through the Kickstarter eligible for the special deal.
Once the racks are produced, Saris hopes the momentum will carry forward into shops where the Glide will be available through their normal distribution channels.